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By Robert Rapier on Nov 6, 2009 with no responses

These Engineers Still Need Jobs

Once again, I am asking for help in placing some of my former engineers who lost jobs in July. As you know, this is a difficult job market across most sectors. Unemployment numbers were released today, and the unemployment rate went over 10% for the first time since 1983.

A number of stories have noted the grim statistics:

College Graduates Face Toughest Job Market in Years

According to a survey from National Association of Colleges and Employers, the class of 2009 is leaving campus with fewer jobs in hand than their 2008 counterparts. The group’s 2009 Student Survey found that just 19.7 percent of 2009 graduates who applied for a job actually have one.

In comparison, 51 percent of those graduating in 2007 and 26 percent of those graduating in 2008 who had applied for a job had one in hand by the time of graduation.

College graduates face a tough road ahead

The unemployment rate for 20- to 24-year-olds has topped 14 percent for the first time in more than 25 years. With the notable engineering exceptions, starting salary offers have fallen by 3.1 percent compared with last year, according to

Small wonder about 1 in 4 of this year’s grads plans on graduate school instead of getting a job.

During my career, engineers have always had an easy time finding jobs. And that last story implies that the job market is still OK for engineers. That has not been my observation. As I reported back in July, my previous company had to let go of a number of engineers. In fact, one of my last tasks was to sit down with most of these engineers and tell them that they no longer had jobs. It was the hardest thing I have ever done in my career. The fact that all of these engineers were doing a great job for us made it much more difficult. Here it is over 3 months later, and these engineers are still looking for jobs. While a couple of them have significant experience, the problem for the others is that they have less than 3 years of experience. It seems that everyone looking for engineers is looking for more than 5 years of experience.

So in the hopes that someone out there needs some good engineers, I want to highlight them once again and link to their resumes. The last time I did this I asked people to e-mail me for their information, and that caused an unnecessary bottleneck. This time you can click on their resumes and contact them directly. As always, I am happy to get on the phone and talk to you about any of these engineers. They are all top-notch, and someone should be utilizing their skills.

Here is a brief description of each, followed by a link to their resume. (Please be forgiving on any small formatting issues, as there are some formatting changes when these get converted from Word into Google Documents).

1. First year chemical engineer out of Arizona State with a 3.6 GPA. Spent 8 years in the U.S. Army. Gets along very well with everyone, and established himself very quickly as a promising engineer in our Arnhem (Netherlands) plant. Ideally would like to work in chemicals/petrochemical or energy. Resume link.

2. MS in Chemical Engineering from Princeton, with a BChE Summa cum Laude from the University of Delaware. Was excellent in an R&D role for us. Interests are process design and improvement in the chemical, biochemical, pharmaceutical, or energy industries. Willing to relocate within US and Canada. Preferences within the following areas: Mid-Atlantic, New England, Pacific Northwest. Resume link.

3. Chemical engineering graduate from Villanova. Enormous potential, but had barely started with us when the reorganization was announced. The all around best of a very good group of candidates I interviewed from the recent graduating Class of 2009. Some experience in pharmaceutical quality control, product development, process optimization, and coal gasification. Would prefer to stay in the PA, NJ, NY, DC, MD, or VA area, but open to other areas for the right career development opportunities. Resume link.

4. Mechanical engineer by training with a substantial blend of operations management and process improvement experience. Has been successful in roles such as Six Sigma Black Belt, Manufacturing Manager, Plant Manager, and Global Process Improvement Manager. Ideal role would be as Operations Director or Director of Process Improvement. Resume link.

5. Ph.D. chemical engineer with more than 20 years of experience, 32 granted patents, and numerous publications. Former professor at a major U.S. university. Has a combination of industry and academic experience. Resume link.